Saturday, February 10, 2007

The Tailgunner's Ghost

Today is Saturday, 10 February 2007.

On 9 February 1950, Senator Joseph "Tailgunner Joe" McCarthy gave the infamous speech at a Republican gathering in Wheeling, West Virginia, wherein he declared that he held in his hand a list of 205 State Department employees “known to the Secretary of State to be members of the Communist Party”.

He later revised the number to 57, then 81, then 10. He also later claimed that Dr. Owen Lattimore, a distinguished scholar of Mongolian history and culture, was the chief Communist spy in America.

When this claim proved false, Senator Robert Taft (R, Ohio), known as “Mr. Republican”, advised: “Don’t worry, Joe. Just keep slinging mud; sooner or later some of it will stick”.

On 8 February 2007, the Pentagon’s Inspector General delivered a report to Congress “revealing” something everyone who bothers to read has known for some time: that Donald Rumsfailed established a rogue intelligence unit within the War Department, tasked with misinterpreting raw intelligence data so as to “justify’ the conquest of Iraq. (With all the soaring imagination characteristic of Donnie’s handling of the conquest, he named the unit the “Office of Special Plans”, which would seem Orwellian were it not so insipid.)

The happy coincidence of these dates, and the connection between McCarthy and Rumsfailed/Bush/Cheney, is that all relished lying to the American public to further their corrupt ambitions, thereby doing more harm to their country than the enemies whose threats they so grossly exaggerated.

McCarthy died, powerless and in disgrace, of cirrhosis of the liver, caused by a fondness for booze and glue-sniffing. Let us hope that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfailed, Rove, Rice, and their entire crime family are soon also powerless and disgraced.

On this date in 1898, the great German poet and playwright Bertolt Brecht was born (d. 1956). Your author’s senior thesis for his B.A. was Galileo in America, a play based on Brecht’s 1948 testimony before the House Committee on UnAmerican Activities.

A special MoB greeting to RtR, who lives in Tailgunner Joe land.


Anonymous RtR said...

Back atcha HH.

Been colder here than that unfortunate portion of the well diggers anatomy that faces up whilst the well digger is getting down to business. I prefer it to the six inches of ice that y'all have enjoyed recently.

A couple of years ago, there was some controversy in Appleton (home of Tailgunner Joe and Harry Houdini) over the removal of Joe's bust from the courthouse. If memory serves, the bust still glowers at the unfortunate passersby.

On a happier note, I am going shopping in Oshkosh this morning, home of the lumber baron Edgar Philetus Sawyer, whose clumsy effort to bribe the brother of the judge in a Treasury case for which Sawyer was a bondsman, gave the brother both his name and notoriety.

The judge's brother was none other than that republican progressive (my, have times changed), Robert, Fighting Bob, LaFollette, Sr.

While we are near the subject and for what it's worth, my present abode is located less than ten miles from the one room school house that served as the meeting place for the birth of the Republican party - the party of Lincoln. (My, how times have changed - squared).

10:39 AM  
Anonymous Leon Radish said...

Here's seconding your hope for the full exposure of the troika.

10:14 PM  
Anonymous Leon Radish said...

Or whatever multiple "-ka" is "warrant"ed.

10:16 PM  

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